Ten long years of socialist politicking, with Kshama Sawant
The Seattle City Councilmember talks Dem failings, good reforms, and her new project to boost the working class
Hello from Tammy’s COVID bunker!
This week, after a short tribute to Montana’s “dean of journalism,” Chuck Johnson, R.I.P., Tammy speaks with Kshama Sawant, the three-term socialist Seattle City Councilmember who recently announced that she will not seek reelection after this year. Instead, she has launched Workers Strike Back, “an independent, rank-and-file campaign” to support organizing nationwide. We discuss [9:42] the Amazonification of Seattle, [31:05] a historic municipal bill banning caste discrimination, and [38:28] critiques of Sawant’s approach to politics and organizing. Plus: Tammy and Kshama debate union strategy.
In this episode, we ask:
Does socialism provide answers to today’s woes?
What did the Black Lives Matter protests in 2020 reveal about identity politics?
How might the Dobbs ruling and other failures of Democratic leadership help us envision a new political party?
What does DSA get right and wrong?
For more, read:
Tammy’s 2019 mini-profile of Kshama
Kshama’s labor history fave: Teamster Rebellion by Farrell Dobbs
A Kentucky worker on “How We’re Fighting for a Union at Amazon’s Biggest Air Hub”
Kshama’s recent bill, making Seattle “the first U.S. city to ban caste discrimination"
And some extras from the TTSG team:
Tammy semi-recommends the return of the LA-catering comedy “Party Down” (though the first two seasons remain vastly superior) and really recommends these sly, tingly novellas, translated from the Japanese, by Yoko Ogawa.
A happy follow-up to the housing episode with Ritti Singh and Navneet Grewal, reported by TTSG guest Wilfred Chan: “‘It’s legal, there’s just no precedent’: the first US town to demand a rent decrease”
More news in racial impostors, via Andy: “Raquel Evita Saraswati pretended to be a woman of color. Her deception traumatized the communities she claimed to help.”